AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 96. Planetary Systems II
Oral, Wednesday, January 8, 2003, 10:00-11:30am, 606-607

[Previous] | [Session 96] | [Next]

[96.02D] Formaldehyde in IRC+10216: Chemistry of an Extrasolar Cometary System

K. E. S. Ford (Johns Hopkins University)

The detection of water vapor (Melnick et al. 2001) and OH (Ford et al. 2003) around the carbon-rich AGB star, IRC+10216, has been interpreted as evidence for the existence of an extrasolar cometary system orbiting IRC+10216. This interpretation is based on the expectation that no oxygen-bearing molecules other than CO, and small amounts of SiO and HCO+, would be found in such a carbon-rich environment. The cometary system in IRC+10216, analogous to the Solar System's Kuiper Belt, should be the source of all oxygen-bearing molecules other than CO, SiO or HCO+ detected around the star. We report the detection of formaldehyde (H2CO) in the circumstellar envelope of IRC+10126, based on observations with the IRAM 30-m telescope. I will discuss what these observations can tell us about the chemical composition and spatial distribution of this extrasolar cometary system.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: saavik@pha.jhu.edu

[Previous] | [Session 96] | [Next]

Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #4
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.